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FMLA: Four Attorney-Recommended Must-Dos When Leave Is Requested
Posted: June 21, 2012
When an employee requests to take leave from his or her job, there are four steps you must take before determining whether the leave is covered under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA).
In a recent blog post, Employment Law Attorney Neal Buethe of the firm Briggs and Morgan (Minneapolis) says employers need to create an FMLA checklist that should be revisited when employees request FMLA-covered leave.
- Is the company covered by FMLA? Small employers can drift in and out of FMLA eligibility from year to year. For your company to be covered under the FMLA it must have employed 50 or more workers for each working day for at least 20 or more calendar workweeks in the current or preceding calendar year.
- Is the employee FMLA eligible? Remember, to be eligible for FMLA leave an employee must have completed at least 12 months of service and worked at least 1,250 hours during the preceding 12 months.
- Is the reason for leave FMLA-eligible? The employee requesting leave must have a medical condition that meets the FMLA's definition of a "serious health condition" in order to qualify for FMLA job-protected leave — or be caring for a family member with such a condition. Then the person must provide sufficient medical certification of the condition.
- Did you avoid promising too much about reinstatement? The FMLA requires employers to reinstate workers returning from leave to an "equivalent" position. But you do not want to promise workers they will get their old jobs back at the beginning of their leave if you are not 100% certain you can deliver on that promise.
Want to know more? Read the full article by Christian Schappel at HR Morning